two.begin2four.end2 Our Mission Endures and Our Work Continues Mark Del Monte, JD CEO, Executive Vice President The story of the Academy’s founding is remarkable—born at a time of national crisis, but also an era that saw great advances in new medical and public health knowledge. Th e pediatricians who created the Academy would have lived and practiced during the 1918 fl u pandemic, an international crisis that devastated entire communities and killed 50 million people worldwide. Nearly half its victims were healthy young adults, and infants and toddlers were highly vulnerable. Tools to study infectious pathogens were still in their infancy. All the while, World War I raged on. Th e vision for this new national organization came from the experience of our founders like Drs. Cliff ord Grulee and William Lucas who served with the Red Cross in Lyon, France. Dr. Grulee was Assistant Chief of the Children’s Bureau of the American Red Cross and ran the hospital and home for refugee children. As we see in the history described here, these were the times in which pediatrics came of age: an era struggling with pandemic disease, infant mortality, child labor, and widespread poverty, and into which our founders brought to the fore notions of public health and social determinants of health, of child adversity and the need to correlate all aspects of child welfare. Th is progressive movement led to the 1930 White House Conference on Child Health and Protection, where pediatricians were leaders and partners. We see the foundations of pediatrics and the mission of the Academy in the remarkable Children’s Charter emanating from this historic national summit. Th e AAP was their answer: a new organization of pediatricians dedicated to the well-being of all children, rooted in science, education, and advocacy. Th is mission guided us through the Great Depression and Second World War, and as described here, on the frontlines of every child health challenge in the nine decades to follow. Decades from now, when the Academy looks back, they will say that 2020 was one for the record books, a time like no other, but one the Academy was built for. As we look forward to our 100th Anniversary, we are inspired by this history and deeply committed to assuring the legacy lives on. Together, as always, we will lean into the evidence, put children’s health and well-being fi rst, and use our platform and expertise to make a diff erence. Our mission endures and our work continues.
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